District 36 may not have the cache or name recognition of NYC hotspots Lavo and Provocateur, which frequently play host to big-name DJs from around the world… but we think it should. Belgian brothers Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike took over the space on a recent Thursday night, and what was once a garment factory was transformed into 14,000 square feet of rage.
When you enter District 36, you’re taken through a mazelike entryway (we went up a flight of stairs, and then mysteriously down another) that eventually opens onto a colossal dance floor. The centerpiece of the room? A ridiculously oversized disco ball. The DJ booth is perfectly positioned on a second-floor balcony, along with a select few tables and space for dancing. From our elevated vantage point, we were able to scope the crowd below, while also getting a close-up view of Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike in the mix.
What’s most impressive about DV & LM is how incredibly attuned they are to one another: each DJ had an instinctive sense of what the other was doing and planning to do, and acted accordingly. At one point we remarked that it appeared as if their four arms were actually connected to one body. The brothers put on a hard-hitting, intensely energetic set; they mashed their own beats – “Rej,” “Stomp” – with lyrics from every corner of the music world, like Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep” and Blur’s “Song 2.” With the exception of a brief Red Hot Chili Peppers breakdown, the set was up-tempo and fast-moving. Despite their distance from the crowd, Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike kept everyone hyped up and dancing for the entirety of their (all too brief) hour-and-a-half set. Below, five of our favorite tracks from the set:
1. Avicii – Levels (Clockwork Remix)
Our love of “Levels” here at DA is well-documented, but it’s refreshing to hear a remixed version nonetheless. The Clockwork version of the song chops up the signature chord progression, adding some sexy electro synths. The crowd was loving this one.
2. Deniz Koyu – Tung!
One of the ultimate get-hype songs. Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike played this early on in their set, and got everyone clapping and dancing along in no time.
3. LMFAO – Champagne Showers (Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike Tomorrowland Mix)
Like the ballers they are, DV & LM used “Champagne Showers” as an opportunity to spray the crowd with a bottle of champagne. Well played.
4. Dimitri Vegas, Like Mike & Promise Land – Alarma (Miami 305 Mix)
DV & LM played the instrumental, more club-ready version of their newest song, “Alarma,” rather than the vocal version. We’re not complaining – the beat speaks for itself.
5. Swanky Tunes – Oh Yeah
Swanky Tunes has so many popular tracks, but “Oh Yeah” hasn’t gotten enough love in our opinion. Its down-and-dirty sound was right at home in DV & LM’s set.
Bonus: Duck Sauce vs. Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike – Barbra Streisand vs. Generation X (Steve Angello Bootleg)
This track was probably the pinnacle of the set. Everyone went wild for this one! Steve Angello’s bootleg has found its way into many a DJ set this summer and fall, and for good reason.
Bonus 2: Justice vs. Simian vs. Sebastian Ingrosso & Alesso – We Are Your Friends vs. Calling
This acapella has been mashed with everything, but it sounds fresh again over “Calling.”